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Blood at the Root: A Racial Cleansing in America
Blood at the Root: A Racial Cleansing in America | Patrick Phillips
A gripping tale of racial cleansing in Forsyth County, Georgia, and a harrowing testament to the deep roots of racial violence in America. Forsyth County, Georgia, at the turn of the twentieth century was home to a large African American community that included ministers and teachers, farmers and field hands, tradesmen, servants, and children. Many black residents were poor sharecroppers, but others owned their own farms and the land on which theyd founded the countys thriving black churches. But then in September of 1912, three young black laborers were accused of raping and murdering a white girl. One man was dragged from a jail cell and lynched on the town square, two teenagers were hung after a one-day trial, and soon bands of white night riders launched a coordinated campaign of arson and terror, driving all 1,098 black citizens out of the county. In the wake of the expulsions, whites harvested the crops and took over the livestock of their former neighbors, and quietly laid claim to abandoned land. The charred ruins of homes and churches disappeared into the weeds, until the people and places of black Forsyth were forgotten. National Book Award finalist Patrick Phillips tells Forsyths tragic story in vivid detail and traces its long history of racial violence all the way back to antebellum Georgia. Recalling his own childhood in the 1970s and 80s, Phillips sheds light on the communal crimes of his hometown and the violent means by which locals kept Forsyth all white well into the 1990s. Blood at the Root is a sweeping American tale that spans the Cherokee removals of the 1830s, the hope and promise of Reconstruction, and the crushing injustice of Forsyths racial cleansing. With bold storytelling and lyrical prose, Phillips breaks a century-long silence and uncovers a history of racial terrorism that continues to shape America in the twenty-first century.
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LivingReflections
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#24in48 checkin. A bit behind because I need to sleep and went to the gym.

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Alisnazzy
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Why did it take me over a year to start audiobooking at work?! I‘m on fireeeee

JazzFeathers Ah! I've just started audiobooking at work too and l find that it helps me do some of the more boring tasks 1y
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PagesOfKate
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Such an important book. I had no idea about what had happened in Forsyth County until I read this.
#blackhistory #worldhistory
#Riotgrams

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EchoLogical
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Pickpick

The best nonfiction books seem to include just the right amount of facts AND personal stories/details and this one does that. I won't say I enjoyed it because the history in its pages aren't enjoyable unless you're a white supremacist but I learned a lot and that's really all I ask from my nonfiction. Phillips recounts the events leading to black flight out of Forsyth Co, GA and its aftermath in way that makes it hard to put down.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

EchoLogical Also, check out this picture of Patrick Phillips... 😏 #Zaddy 2y
mdhughes72 This one was tough to get through because of the subject matter. 2y
EchoLogical @mdhughes72 It was a really difficult subject but I couldn't stop reading. I had both the print and audio versions so I could listen when I wasn't able to sit and read. I think the parallels between now and then are what struck me the most... That and the fact that to this day, Forsyth Co is 85% white. 2y
58 likes2 stack adds3 comments
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EchoLogical
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Am I the only person still working on my #TBRbingo card? I've been falling asleep on the couch by 7 on most nights but I'm hoping once I make it through the first trimester, I can squeeze some reading time in. 🤞🏽 Anyway, 3 more to go and I'll move on to this year's challenges. @WhatDeeReads

Riveted_Reader_Melissa I haven‘t finished mine either, and you‘re much further along than I am. 2y
EchoLogical @Riveted_Reader_Melissa I wanted to be done by the new year but life got in the way. It happens. 🤷🏾‍♂️ Have you taken on any new challenges this year? 2y
Riveted_Reader_Melissa @EchoLogical I posted mine and tagged you. And yes, #MountTBR, #LitsyAtoZ and #LitsyClassicsAtoZ. Luckily there‘s lots of overlap in there. 2y
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EchoLogical @Riveted_Reader_Melissa Very cool! I'm doing the #popsugar2018 and #litsypassport this year. I'll probably pick up some others once I finish those... If I finish those. Lol 2y
WhatDeeReads @EchoLogical No! I haven‘t posted an update in a while. I will make sure I do soon. Yours looks great! 2y
readinginthedark 👏🏻Nice dedication! 2y
62 likes6 comments
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CAnne
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Pickpick

Patrick Phillips tells a chilling story of racism in the U.S. I had no idea how much I didn't know. Everyone needs to read this book!!! What took place in the southern U.S. is nothing less then terrorism. On this MLK day I pray that Martin Luther King's dream becomes reality and let it begin with me.

JoyfulChaos I'd really like to read this, but I am a little afraid it could break me. 2y
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AGirlAndHerBooks
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I‘ve had this bookmarked to read after someone‘s post here on Litsy. I finally picked it up tonight. Not exactly light holiday reading but I‘m looking forward to making time for this one.

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mdhughes72
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Pickpick

Stranded at the airport means time to finish my book. A sobering reminder of Faulkner‘s immortal adage: ‘The past isn‘t dead — it isn‘t even past.‘ And yet, without memorials and monuments, how quickly we forget. Author does a great job of unearthing and piecing together this important story, but comes up short in the exploration of precisely how such troubling events ought best to be reckoned with in retrospect.

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Newbiebookster
Pickpick

A great read. Very interesting

DarcysMom Hi! Welcome to Litsy! #LitsyWelcomeWagon 2y
RaimeyGallant Welcome to Litsy! #LitsyWelcomeWagon P.S. There are a bunch of Litsy tips in the most recent post on my page. 2y
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Nitpickyabouttrains
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Pickpick

A deeply disturbing story of a county in Georgia. Its amazing how one event in 1912 effected so many decades of history.

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LauraBeth
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I live 15 miles from Forsyth County - so I'm going to spend some time educating myself beyond surface level knowledge about some racial injustices in my backyard. #digdeeper

Balibee146 Looks like an important read 2y
Notafraidofwords He's a professor here in NJ! 2y
CourtStafford I reluctantly live in Forsyth County now. Adding this to my TBR. 2y
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Laura317 Good for you! I think I might try to see if there are any books for my area. I know we have a museum in nearby Clinton, where the Clinton 12 had to be police escorted to school. They were just young kids during integration. The high school was even blown up! It's scary to think some still believe they are better than others based on the color of their skin. I bet there's a book somewhere. 2y
LauraBeth @Balibee146 I've seen it pop up on Litsy so I'm glad to finally read it 😀 2y
LauraBeth @Notafraidofwords he's brilliant and has great prose. I like that he grew up in Forsyth so he knows the area more than just at the research level. 2y
LauraBeth @CourtStafford here's to the "troublemakers" on the right side of history moving into these areas and changing a landscape that was once intolerant to one of inclusion 2y
LauraBeth @Laura317 after some googling - it looks like a book with Jo Ann Boyce will be published soon: http://debbielevybooks.com/2017/07/a-manuscript-and-a-heroine-you-dont-know/ 2y
cathysaid I grew up north of Woodstock and remember when Oprah came to do a show there. http://www.oprah.com/own-oprahshow/oprah-ventures-into-forsyth-county-video 2y
LauraBeth @cathysaid I grew up in Marietta and I think I was in 8th grade when she did that show. 2y
LauraBeth Never mind @cathysaid - I just looked at the link - I was 16. I do remember that my English teacher taped it and showed it to us. 2y
jmtrivera A hard read, but a good one. 2y
Laura317 @laurabeth. Thanks! I'm going to check and see if it can be pre-ordered! 2y
CourtStafford @LauraBeth yes, love that! 2y
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Merethebookgal
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A special #EclecticReaders author interview is out today! This is a tough but compelling read and I would definitely recommend the book! Listen at eclecticreaders.fireside.fm/37

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EclecticReaders
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The newest #EclecticReaders #authorinterview #podcast is out today! Listen on iTunes/Podcast apps under Eclectic Readers, or on our website eclecticreaders.fireside.fm/37

40 likes2 stack adds
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jmtrivera
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This month we celebrate our podcast's and book club's birthdays. A special #EclecticReaders interview episode seemed like a good birthday gift! Check it out at eclecticreaders.fireside.fm/37 !

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Merethebookgal
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I'm so excited for this special #EclecticReaders #Podcast episode! We had a great discussion on this book back in February, and @TaraNewman recently had the opportunity to talk with the author, so I know it's going to be a super interesting interview! eclecticreaders.fireside.fm

Hooked_on_books Thanks for posting! I'll definitely check this out. The book was terrific. 2y
Merethebookgal @Hooked_on_books Awesome! I'll put up a post tomorrow with a link to the interview. 2y
Hooked_on_books @Merethebookgal I finally got to this (I'm way behind on my podcasts) and really enjoyed the interview! He's lovely. I hope he writes the book about the Cherokee removal that he suggested he might do. I'll be sure to check out your other podcast episodes. 2y
Merethebookgal @Hooked_on_books I'm glad you enjoyed the interview! I agree, I think a book about the Cherokee removal would be very interesting. I hope you enjoy our other episodes; we've got a pretty good backlist now of author interviews along with our regular monthly episodes 😃 2y
76 likes4 comments
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EclecticReaders
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This month the Eclectic Readers Podcast turns 2 years old, and we're celebrating with a bonus episode coming your way at the end of the month! We had a great discussion on this book back in February and are excited to share our interview with the author! #authorinterview #podcast #EclecticReaders

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TheEscapist
Pickpick

This book shines a spotlight on the intersection of racism and organized violence. The descriptions of white men roaming the Forsyth County at night are terrifying. This is an important read because it puts names and narrative to a kind of evil that is difficult to imagine, but that is perpetrated by ordinary people. I read it in two days.

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bates_barb
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This isn't really a standard true crime book (it doesn't focus on a single criminal, but an entire county), but it's incredibly well done. #seewhatihavewon @Liberty

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Sarrie
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Pickpick

This was great, a tough read but great. I had heard of Forsyth once or twice before but never in this much detail. If it's something that interests you try it for sure, just be ready for the photographs of lynch mob victims early in the book. I gobbled this one up.

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bookwrm526
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Pickpick

Y'all, I don't know if I could have made it through this one without some serious kitty cat 🐱😻 cuddles, so it's good he was in the mood for it. I thought my head was going to explode before I finished the introduction! A lot of the rhetoric and tactics sounded sadly familiar....

LeahBergen Oh, he's so sweet! 3y
MrBook 😻😻😻😻 3y
bookwrm526 @LeahBergen only when he wants to be, but I guess that's pretty typical 3y
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DebinHawaii So cute & snuggly! 🐱❤️ 3y
JessClark78 🐱❤️ 3y
LauraBeth What a sweet boy 😻 3y
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v_cuev
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Pickpick

I remember hearing about this book on NPR: http://www.npr.org/2016/09/15/494063372/the-racial-cleansing-that-drove-1-100-bl...

It was shocking to hear about the awful history of a town just north of Atlanta and my home. The book was so well-researched and I think it really benefitted from being written by someone who grew up in Forsyth county. A book that is well worth reading.

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Bookzombie
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Pickpick

I finished this in February, and I'm still talking and thinking about it. This is an important part of history we all need to learn about and learn from so we don't repeat it. The book itself is well written and easily read, even though the subject is rough. I can't recommend this book enough.

#nonfictionchallenge17
#marchintoreading Day 3
#recentnonfictionread

Bookzombie I just want to give a shout out to the Eclectic Readers podcast. @EclecticReaders @TheNextBook After I finished this, I listened to their podcast and it was great. http://sunriserobot.net/eclecticreaders/31/ 3y
TheNextBook I'm glad you enjoyed it. It was a great discussion about a really imprtant and relevant topic. 3y
Bookzombie @TheNextBook It was. It was also great to get more information on where the title came from. I had never heard of the poem or song. Thank you! 3y
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jmtrivera @Bookzombie Thanks for the shout-out! It really was a thought-provoking read in so many ways. I'm still thinking about it. 3y
Merethebookgal It really is such a thought-provoking book. I'm glad you enjoyed the podcast episode! 3y
EclecticReaders Glad to hear you enjoyed the podcast episode! Thanks for listening! 3y
61 likes2 stack adds6 comments
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Merethebookgal
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These are the non fiction books I've read already this year, which kind of blows me away, because up until a year ago I rarely picked up non-fiction! #marchintoreading

stargazerblue49 Loved As You Wish! It was a great audiobook! 3y
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Audrey
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Pickpick

This was a gut wrenching and slightly nauseating read. The author is from Cummings, GA in Forsyth County. His family moved there (from Atlanta) when he was child and he noticed that there were no black people there. His classmates casually told him that they were all driven out (in 1912). This was in 1977! 10 years later, the author and his family, along with other civil rights activists, marched for integration. Again this was in 1987!

Audrey The author explores the shameful and sordid history of the county, the terrorism and lynching of blacks as well as driving all 1000+ blacks out of town in about 2 months. Integration only happened about 20 years ago and it's really only bc Atlanta sprawled. 3y
Audrey For many reasons, all nonsensical, the county wanted to stay white. It's this kind of thinking that lead to our current political climate. 3y
Notafraidofwords Sigh , depressing as hell 3y
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BookishFeminist
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It's so beautiful out today!! So we're capitalizing on the weather and eating outside at our favorite Italian deli. My sub and prickly pear San Pellegrino are really good, and so is this book. It's a difficult read content-wise, but it's well-written so it's moving faster than most nonfiction. ☀️

Gina Nice... we are thawing out from an ice storm here in WI 3y
Notafraidofwords You're sandwich is delicious 3y
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Merethebookgal That sub looks delish!! 😋 What deli? 3y
BookishFeminist @Notafraidofwords It was! So yummy. Hit the spot 😀 3y
BookishFeminist @Gina that sounds wretched. I hope you get some nicer weather soon! I've been rather pleased to compare forecasts with my partners fam in MN this week 😅 spring will be here soon though. 3y
BookishFeminist @Merethebookgal Italian Store! We went to the one by Westover 3y
Gina @BookishFeminist ahhhh yes for some it is but I must say when every outdoor thing is encased in ice and sparkling from the bright sun early in the morning I find it magical... that is as long as the streets are salted. 3y
129 likes2 stack adds8 comments
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BookishFeminist
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Starting this one tonight! I've heard great things about it and I *think* I'm ready for a heavier read again. 🤞🏼

#socialjustice #racialjustice

Notafraidofwords He's a professor at a university here in NJ. 3y
Ruri_kaichou Good pick for something heavier! Can't wait to hear your thoughts. 3y
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PacingTheCage I really want to read this one too. 3y
heikemarie This is on my list but I'm saving it for my library's book club! Looking forward to your thoughts. 3y
lauralovesbooks1 This one is so good-- horrifying and heartbreaking, but an important read. 3y
Yellowpigeon I loved this book as it is so important. Points out how we got to this place in time. 3y
Hooked_on_books You may find yourself yelling at it in places--I know I did! 3y
99 likes10 stack adds9 comments
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EclecticReaders
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Last question! Would you recommend this book? #EclecticReaders

SaraBeagle Absolutely! 3y
31 likes2 comments
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EclecticReaders
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The author, Patrick Phillips, is a white male who happened to grow up in one of the most overtly racists counties in the U.S.; how do you feel he handled the material that comprised the book? #EclecticReaders

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EclecticReaders
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There were so many shocking and hard truths in this book- what was something that especially stood out to you? (It doesn't have to be the most gruesome, but just something that shocked you.) #EclecticReaders

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EclecticReaders
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The #EclecticReaders cohosts all enjoyed the author's writing style, how about you?

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EclecticReaders
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In this episode's general book talk, Jeannette, Meredith, Stacie, and Tara talked about some of their favorite POC (Person of Color) characters in literature. Who are some of your favorite POC characters? #EclecticReaders

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readordierachel
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Pickpick

Not an easy read. But it's important that we don't forget these parts of our nation's history, especially now.

#LitsyAtoZ #LetterB
@BookishMarginalia

vivastory Looks extremely important. Adding to TBR. This also looks interesting 3y
readordierachel @vivastory That does look interesting! Going on my list. 3y
64 likes1 stack add2 comments
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EclecticReaders
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ICYMI the newest #EclecticReaders #podcast episode is out! Listen in before discussion questions are posted Sunday night at sunriserobot.net/eclecticreaders/31 or on iTunes

Mc_cart_ny Listened Friday, it was great! 3y
EclecticReaders @Mc_cart_ny Glad to hear you enjoyed it! 😃 3y
42 likes2 comments
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Merethebookgal
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Check out the newest #EclecticReaders #Podcast episode with special guest, fellow Litten, and book blogger: Stacie! ( @TheNextBook ) In this episode we announce some exciting podcast news, talk about our fave POC characters in literature, and discuss this tough but important book, Blood at the Root. Listen at sunriserobot.net/eclecticreaders/31 or on iTunes and check out Stacie's blog at thenextbookonmylist.blogspot.com

Ruri_kaichou This book still stands out in my mind and it's been several weeks, but it was pretty bad the week after I finished reading it. So powerful. 3y
75 likes1 comment
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TheNextBook
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I want to give a huge thank you to @EclecticReaders for inviting me to join them in their discussion of Blood at the Root. I hope everyone gets a chance to check out the podcast up today! It was amazing being able to talk with you guys!

http://Sunriserobot.net/eclecticreaders/31

EclecticReaders We're so happy you joined us; the discussion we had was awesome in a great part to you! 3y
TheNextBook @EclecticReaders thank you guys! Really grateful to take part! 3y
jmtrivera Thanks for joining us! 😊 3y
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Notafraidofwords @jmtrivera @TheNextBook @EclecticReaders He is a professor here in New Jersey and comes to my library. He's going to speak at a library here in NJ. 3y
jmtrivera @Notafraidofwords Wow! Are you going to go see him? It sounds like it would be a really interesting event. 3y
Notafraidofwords @jmtrivera I would, but I haven't read the book. I'm not sure if I will be able to before the event. 3y
TheNextBook @Notafraidofwords go! Meet him and take pictures. This book was great! 3y
Godmotherx5 Hearing your voice was exciting. Great podcast! 3y
TheNextBook @Godmotherx5 Did I sound like it was before the crack of dawn because it was! 😂 Thank you. It was amazing. 3y
Godmotherx5 @TheNextBook Not at all. You sounded sultry. 3y
TheNextBook @Godmotherx5 aw! Thanks! 😉 3y
BillBlume In the middle of listening to this episode now. Was so pumped when you mentioned Fifth Season. N.K. Jemisin rocks! 3y
TheNextBook @BillBlume it was so good! I just bought The Obelisk Gate yesterday and I am debating on when to read it! Especially with the last one in the trilogy coming out soon! I hope you enjoy the rest of the episode! 3y
BillBlume You will love The Obelisk Gate. I had so many doubts about it being able to maintain the quality and momentum of the first book, but Jemisin does an amazing job. 3y
68 likes2 stack adds14 comments
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EclecticReaders
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The Feb #EclecticReaders #Podcast episode is out! We have a special guest on this episode, fellow Litten and book blogger: Stacie! ( @TheNextBook ) We announce some exciting podcast news, talk about our fave POC characters in literature, and discuss this tough but important book, Blood at the Root. Listen at sunriserobot.net/eclecticreaders/31 or on iTunes and check out Stacie's blog at thenextbookonmylist.blogspot.com

Bianca What are you guys reading next? 3y
EclecticReaders @Bianca We actually just posted about it and hope you'll read along with us! 😃 we're reading 3y
Bianca @EclecticReaders Cool! I look forward to hearing the discussion. 3y
EclecticReaders @Bianca We've been hearing great things about it, so hopefully it'll spark some good discussion. Thanks for listening! 3y
50 likes4 comments
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spinesvines
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Pickpick

🍷🍷🍷🍷Cheers!
What a heavy read!! The 'Racial Cleansing' that drove 1,100 black residents out of Forsyth County, GA. I don't know why I continued to be shocked at the pure EVIL that resides in humans. Although the year was 1912, the underlying foundation of this story is rearing its ugly head again. Not that this hatred ever went away but now there's a platform to not have any decency or empathy for your fellow man. #spinesvines

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EclecticReaders
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We're a little less than a week out from the next #EclecticReaders #podcast episode discussing "Blood at the Root." Did you know that the title of the book comes from a line in a poem (and later a song) called "Strange Fruit?" Check out this article for some interesting background on the poet, the poem, and the song: http://www.npr.org/2012/09/05/158933012/the-strange-story-of-the-man-behind-stra...

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Bookzombie
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#riotgrams Day 8 This is one of my current reads. Thank you to all on Litsy who posted about it so I would know to snap it up when I saw it at the library. #blackhistory #bookriot

64 likes5 stack adds
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Merethebookgal
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I finished Blood at the Root for the next #EclecticReaders #Podcast episode, I have Homegoing waiting on my shelf, and I'm on the hold list at the library for the audiobook version of Between the World and me. #BlackHistory #Riotgrams

vivastory You're in for a real treat with "Homegoing" 3y
Merethebookgal @vivastory I'm looking forward to it! 3y
101 likes2 comments
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SaraBeagle
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Occasionally I'll find something placed on the table in my reading nook. It's my husband's subtle way of saying, "here is something you're interested in and I promise it's not a boring academic book." (He's an history instructor and he totally gets me) ?

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Bookzombie
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Today I went to a different library branch for a book sale and sadly they shut it down due to weather before I got there. Never fear, I did leave with a stack of library books! #libraryhaul #someofthesemaynotfitchallenges

MaleficentBookDragon Jaws scared me in high school. I wouldn't get in my pool for weeks. 😛 (edited) 3y
Bookzombie @MaleficentTheBookDragon I haven't read the book before. I picked it up because of @Liberty 's Fun Friday Photo this week. 3y
69 likes2 comments
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Ruri_kaichou
Pickpick

I highly recommend this book to everyone. Yes, it's a hard read but eye opening to a part of history where people are unaware of the whole scope. This is a book that will stay with me way after finishing it.

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Ruri_kaichou
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Finished Blood at the Root in the eleventh hour. I wasn't expecting to finish it so I did my Jan summary before reading it. Little did I know that there were a lot of notes at the end of the book. So of course I had to update. 😳😅 I had a lull in the second half of the month b/c Blood at the Root got to me mentally so I turned to some other hobbies to recoup. It was a great read, but hard.

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Merethebookgal
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Pickpick

This book is a hard read; it's heartbreaking and infuriating, but it's also an incredibly important read, and we need to learn from our mistakes and the dark points in our past lest we allow history to repeat itself. For being such a tough subject it is written very well and was a quick read; I'd definitely recommend.

Hooked_on_books I agree wholeheartedly! I finished this about a week ago and am really glad I read it. 3y
Beckys_Books Hopefully in the future people learn from what is going on right now. 3y
Merethebookgal @Hooked_on_books I'm glad you had the same experience, what a tough but important read! 3y
Merethebookgal @Beckys_Books I truly hope so! 3y
85 likes3 stack adds4 comments
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kim.guernsey
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Today is brought to you by the letter B: beef oxtail, brussel sprouts, Blood at the Root, and later the Bodyguard (musical).

DebinHawaii Perfect! 👍😀 3y
31 likes1 comment
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jmtrivera
Pickpick

So hard to read, but worth it.

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Ruri_kaichou

Wilson held office from 1913 to 1921, and throughout his two terms he continued to implement Jim Crow codes in Washington, ....... Having such a man in the White House emboldened white supremacists across the nation....

I just can't even... I hate that this is repeating itself

Mc_cart_ny This is literally the only thing I know about Wilson: racist asshole. 3y
Merethebookgal It's infuriating 3y
35 likes2 comments
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emilygatlin
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Sunday book mail is 🔥🔥🔥

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Mc_cart_ny
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From the summer of '43 in Detroit. When there was an influx of immigrants from Europe and African Americans moved north in a "Great Migration" racial tensions became high and white people became violent and increasingly intolerant of other people. It's very sad to see history repeating itself.

Ruri_kaichou I was just talking about this with me neighbor earlier. About how horrifying and eye opening it is and how relevant. It's a shame 😩😧 3y
Merethebookgal I just got to this part of the book, too. The recent parallels are sad and unsettling 😔😢 3y
12 likes2 comments